Lesson 2 comments

1. 你呢 nǐne (and you)

呢 ne is a particle that can be used in different ways, sometimes to indicate a question.

2. 咱们 zánmen (we)

This word is used by the speaker to refer to him/herself and the person(s) spoken to--all as part of "we." It's different from 我们 wǒmen (we), which could be spoken without trying to include the person spoken to among the "we." "Zánmen" is frequently used in situations where we would say "Let's . . ." in English.

3. 那咱们去喝咖啡吧。Nà zánmen qù hē kāifēi ba. ("So let's go drink coffee.)

In this sentence, the final particle (吧 ba) serves the purpose of tryng to elicit agreement. It often appears in sentences using "let's" (e.g., "Let's go out.").

4. 咱们去以前 。 。 。 Zánmen qù yǐqián . . . ("Before we go . . . ")

Unlike English, "before" ("yǐqián") goes after the verb it is related to. So, literally translated into English the above words mean: "We go before . . ."

5. 块 kuài

This is the measure word for paper money and for certain other things.

6. 两 liǎng (two)

Both the above character and 二 èr mean "two," but they are used on different occasions. In a phone number, for example, we would use "èr" for the number two. If we said "two thousand" or "two people," we would use "liǎng."

7. 够了 gòule (enough)

The particle "le" is used in many different ways in Chinese. Sometimes it signifies that something happened in the past or has just finished. It can also signify that something is definite. That is how it is used here.

8. 我的钥匙在哪儿. Wǒde yàoshi zài nǎr.

The literal translation of this sentence is: "My key at where." "Where" comes after the noun it is referring to.

9. 往右拐 wǎng yòu guǎi (turn right)

This phrase literally means: "toward right turn." So, in Chinese we need to say "toward (the) right," not just "right."

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